Mount Saint Mary College

Mount Saint Mary College
Mount Saint Mary College
Motto Doce Me Veritatem (Teach Me the Truth)
Established 1960
Type Private College
Endowment US $42 million
President Fr. Kevin E. Mackin, O.F.M., S.T.D.
Students 2,700+
Undergraduates 2,200
Postgraduates 580
Location Newburgh, New York, USA
Campus Suburban, Located along the Hudson River 70 acres
Colors Blue    
Sports NCAA Division III
Nickname "The Mount" "MSMC"
Mascot Knights
Mount Saint Mary College

Mount Saint Mary College is a private, co-educational, four-year liberal arts college, located in Newburgh in the mid-Hudson Valley region of New York State. Founded in 1960 by the Sisters of Saint Dominic, the college is committed to providing students of all faiths an education rich in the liberal arts and grounded in strong Judeo-Christian traditions.

The campus overlooks the Hudson River, halfway between New York City and Albany. More than 2,700 men and women are enrolled in over 50 undergraduate programs and 3 graduate degree programs.

The Knights compete in NCAA Division III athletics in the Skyline Conference. The college has expanded its athletic fields with a new all-weather turf field to help accommodate growth in athletic teams.

In the past decade, the college has undergone tremendous growth to keep up with enrollment. In 2009, the Mount dedicated the new Kaplan Family Mathematics, Science and Technology Center, which houses a Nursing Learning Resource Center and modern science laboratories, learning spaces and equipment. In 2010, the college opened its new all-season turf athletic fields and six new tennis courts. The new Aquinas Hall dining commons, called "The View," opened to great response from students and community.



The Sisters of Saint Dominic of Newburgh founded Greater Mount Saint Mary Academy in 1927. Initially, the college was a Normal and Teacher Training School for the members of the religious community. In 1959, the college charter was amended by the Board of Regents of the State of New York to accept lay students.

Four German-speaking sisters of St. Dominic first arrived in New York City in 1853. They left the security of their convent of the Holy Cross in Regensburg, Germany to start a school in Pennsylvania. Plans went awry and the sisters opened a school on Second Street in lower Manhattan. Thirty years later, in 1883 at the request of the pastor of St. Mary's Church in Newburgh, a small group of sisters from the Second Street Convent opened Mount Saint Mary Academy off Gidney Avenue on property that had once belonged to the prosperous Harvey Weed family.

S. R. Van Duzer, a wealthy wholesale drug company owner, moved into A. Gerald Hull's Villa on the southeast side of the Thomas Powell estate in 1853. VanDuzer changed the name from Hull's Villa to Rozenhof, and began the arduous task of enlarging the house and transforming the property into a magnificent garden. VanDuzer died in 1903; his wife six-months later. The property remained in the VanDuzer family until the death, in 1913, of the VanDuzer's daughter, Katherine VanDuzer Burton. Although the family was offered a grand sum for the property by the proprietors of a tuberculosis sanatorium, the VanDuzers instead turned to their neighbors, the Dominican sisters on Gidney Avenue, and asked what price they might be able to pay for the property. Even though their offer of $65,000 was less than half of what the VanDuzers had been offered by the eager sanitarium bidders, Rozenhof, the carriage house, the ice house and a hothouse were sold to the sisters.

The Dominican Sisters' reputation for academic excellence became legendary. They had outgrown the existing facilities on their property. The new Academy, called Greater Mount Saint Mary, opened in 1927 and served as a high school. A storehouse was rebuilt as the Casa San Jose and it served as the elementary school.

Because the Dominican Sisters were involved in education in Newburgh and throughout the New York-New Jersey area, even as far away as Puerto Rico, the demand for a teacher training program was evident. The New York State Education Department certified the Mount Saint Mary Normal and Training School in 1930. In 1934, the Commissioner of Education granted full approval to the program and Mount received the authority to issue teacher's certificates at the conclusion of the three-year program. The Casa San Jose had served the sisters well, but a new facility was needed to meet the demands accredited by the Middle States Commission on Elementary Education, continues to provide a stellar education for students in the region.

In January 1955, the Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York granted the Mount a provisional charter to grant the degree of Associate in Arts upon the completion of the registered three-year curriculum. The Board of Regents voted to amend the college's charter on October 3, 1959. The Mount was now a four-year liberal arts college and opened its door to the first class of lay women in 1960. In June 1962, the Mount granted its first bachelor's degree, a Bachelor of Science in Education.

In 1963, Aquinas Hall, named after Saint Thomas Aquinas, opened. This three-story building becomes the centerpiece of the college's academic life. Guzman Hall opens this same year. It was originally the residence hall for the young Dominican novices. The first graduating class in 1964 consisted of 32 graduates. In May 1968, the college received full accreditation from the Middle States Association and in the spring of that year the first and only male student begins taking classes at the new co-ed Mount Saint Mary College. In 1970, 58 male students were enrolled at the college. In 1984, the college's first master's degree program was introduced leading to a Master of Science in Special Education.

Alice Curtis Desmond bequeathed her Balmville estate to the Mount in 1991. Both the Center for Community Education Service and Learning Is Forever Enriching (LIFE) program offices are located at the Mount's Desmond Campus.

The William and Elaine Kaplan Recreation Center, home of many of the college's Blue Knights teams, opened in 1992. After four decades, the building known as the Jewish Community Center, situated between the Kaplan Recreation Center and the College Courts, continued the legacy of community and learning when it was dedicated as Hudson Hall in 1999. This academic facility provided needed classroom and office space, and housed an auditorium, a cafeteria and the McTigue Art Gallery, named in honor of Rev. Joseph McTigue, O.P..

The demand for student housing was at an all-time high when Sakac Hall, named in honor of Sr. Ann Sakac, President of Mount Saint Mary College, opened its doors to freshman women in 2003. A new and improved Guzman Hall opened in the fall of 2004. The once humble chapel that was part of Guzman Hall was transformed into a special house of prayer. Founders Chapel, named in honor of the Dominican Sisters who founded the college, and Guzman Hall were both re-dedicated on the same day in 2004.

In 2007, the Kaplan Family Center for Mathematics, Science and Technology opened as an addition to Aquinas Hall. The college publicly announced the Answering the Call campaign to raise $10 million toward this project. The center provided state-of-the-art biology, chemistry and computer labs and a Nursing Learning Resource Center on the second floor of Aquinas Hall. The MST Center also featured a 3,000-square-foot (280 m2) atrium, a Career Center, and the Jazzman’s Café.

In 2008, the college completed a $30 million renovation project on the College Courts, townhouse style apartments on the north side of campus for the upperclassmen. The units are air-conditioned, wireless-ready, and offer ultra-modern conveniences.

On June 30, 2008 Sister Ann Sakac retired after 31 years as president of Mount Saint Mary College. Father Kevin E. Mackin, OFM, began his tenure as the fifth president of Mount Saint Mary College on July 1, and was inaugurated on October 17, 2008.


Mount Saint Mary College offers over 50 undergraduate degree programs and 3 graduate degree programs.

Undergraduate degree programs include Accounting, Accounting BS/MBA (5-year program), Biology, Biology BA/MS in Ed (5-year program), Business Management and Administration (concentrations in Finance and Marketing), Communication Arts-Media Studies (concentrations in Journalism and Production), Communication Arts-Public Relations, Chemistry, Chemistry BA/MS in Ed (5-year program), Counseling/Psychology, Education (Childhood, Adolescence, and Special Education), English, Hispanic Studies, History, History /Political Science, Human Services, Information Technology (concentrations in Educational Technologies, Networking, & Web Technologies), Interdisciplinary Studies (concentrations in General Science and Pre-Law), Mathematics, Nursing, Podiatry, Physical Therapy/Psychology, Physical Therapy/ Biology, Pre-Dentistry, Pre-Medicine, Pre-Veterinary, Psychology, Publishing, Social Sciences, Social Work/Human Services, Sociology, Sociology (concentration in Criminology), and Undeclared.

Graduate degree programs include the Master of Business Administration, Master of Science in Education, and the Master of Science in Nursing. The Nursing program also offers the Post-Master's certificate in Adult Nurse Practitioner and Family Nurse Practitioner.

Collaboration programs at the Mount offer undergraduate and advanced degrees with participating colleges such as Fordham University, Pace University, and New York Medical College. These programs include counseling, physical therapy, podiatry, publishing, and social work. The Mount also has 5-year degree programs in Accounting BS/MBA program and biology or chemistry BA with a master's in adolescent education.

Mount Saint Mary has a vibrant and growing Study Abroad program, where a student can take classes for a semester or summer session in Oxford, England; Dublin, Ireland, Florence, Italy, or Segovia, Spain.

The college has 12 Honor Societies: Alpha Chi (general), Alpha Sigma Lambda (continuing education), Beta Beta Beta (biology), Delta Mu Delta (accounting and business), Gamma Sigma Epsilon (chemistry), Kappa Delta Pi (education), Kappa Mu Epsilon (Mathematics), Lambda Pi Eta (Communication Arts), Phi Alpha Theta (history), Psi Chi (psychology), Sigma Tau Delta (English), and Sigma Theta Tau (nursing).


Set on 44 acres (180,000 m2) green of rolling hills overlooking the Hudson River, Mount Saint Mary College's campus offers unsurpassed views of the river and the Hudson Valley.

On campus, the Mount's history co-exists with the modern in the campus buildings. These range from a stately 19th century home and carriage house to a sleek modern technology center and our new or renovated residence halls.

Sakac Hall is a modern residence hall with magnificent views of the campus and the Hudson River. Each floor has a lounge area with a bathroom and study area. Additional amenities in the building include: a movie theater room, laundry room, computer room, vending machines, fitness room, as well as a fully equipped kitchen.

Guzman Hall has a lounge area on every floor. You'll find a movie theater room, laundry room, computer room, vending machines, fitness room, as well as a fully equipped kitchen.

Renovations of the College Courts were completed in 2010. These spacious townhouse-style upperclassmen residences have several lounges in each building, and at least one full kitchen. There laundry facilities, study areas, vending machines, recreation tables, large-screen televisions and other amenities, like the Knight Spot.

Aquinas Hall and the Kaplan Family Mathematics, Science & Technology Center(MST) is the Mount's main campus building. The MST Center has a state-of-the-art Nursing Learning Resource Center, newly-equipped science and technology classrooms and labs, and a large glass atrium. There are "smart classrooms" and large lecture halls, a state-of-the art media lab, the Campus Technology Center, and the Curtin Memorial Library. The Mount's brand new dining commons, called "The View," opened in Fall 2010. There's the campus store, student lounge, administrative offices and the 1,100-seat Aquinas Hall Theatre, where you'll see college productions, concerts, lectures and attend academic events. There's even a "Starbucks" style cafe called Jazzman's.

Hudson Hall is home to the Education Division, Residence Life, Student Activities, the HEOP office, Campus Ministry, and Security & Safety. This building also houses an auditorium and ten "smart classrooms," the Knight Radio station, and an art gallery. Sandella's Café and the Hudson Smart Market offer hot and cold meals, snacks, fruit, vegetables, juices, and coffee.

The William and Elaine Kaplan Recreation Center is home to the Knights and of great Division III basketball, volleyball and swimming. For soccer, lacrosse and softball action, there's the new all-season turf athletic field, just across from Hudson Hall. Our NCAA-regulation basketball court is also used for intramurals and pick-up games. The competition-sized pool, indoor running track, weight training/exercise, aerobic exercise rooms, and game rooms are also available to all students. There's also a student lounge and an annex with additional classrooms.

Whittaker Hall was the carriage house on the original estate. You'll find the Divisions of Social Science and Philosophy and Religious Studies here.

The Villa was built in the 1840s. In the early years of the college, this Victorian building was the entire college - classes, residence hall, offices and library. Today the Villa houses the Admissions office, Community Relations, Marketing, the President's office, and the Vice President of Academic Affairs' office.

Bishop Dunn Memorial School is a private elementary (K-8) school located on the south end of our campus.

Student life

Student Government

The Student Government Association is the legislative body for student life. It can recommend policy changes to the Vice President for Student Affairs and the president of the College. The Director of Student Activities advises the Student Government Association. Student representatives sit on major faculty committees and participate in ad hoc committees formed during the year. Mount Saint Mary's Commuter Council represents commuter students on campus, while the Resident Living Council represents students who live on campus.

Student Activities

Working with the Director of Student Activities, Student Government plans and implements a wide and diverse spectrum of activities including films, trips, plays, parties, dinner dances, coffeehouses, lectures, and yearbook (Thyme). The Activity Fee is used to sponsor these events. The Student Activities offices, located in Hudson Hall, are a focal point for Student Activities and events. The center includes the Student Government and student publications offices, an auditorium, as well as meeting rooms and lounges. Food service is also available. The college offers the MSMC Shuttle Van to transport students to local shopping areas and the Beacon Train Station. The shuttle is available on a first-come, first-served basis, with a Mount identification card.


MSMC BlueKnights.jpg

Mount Saint Mary College is a NCAA division III school, with 15 competing teams. MSMC participates in the Eastern College Athletic Conference and the Skyline Conference. These intercollegiate athletics programs include baseball, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's cross-country, men's and women's lacrosse, men's and women's soccer, softball, men's and women's swimming, men's and women's tennis, and women's volleyball. The college also sponsors intramural sports year round.

The Elaine and William Kaplan Recreation Center is the site of many athletic events on campus. The Kaplan Center houses basketball and volleyball courts, a running track, a pool, a weight room, an aerobics room and training facilities. The men's and women's basketball teams compete inside the Kaplan Center, as do the women's volleyball team and the men's and women's swimming teams. Kaplan Field is a new all-season turf athletic field, located across from Hudson Hall, that serves as the site for men's and women's soccer and lacrosse. Next to the turf athletic field are six new tennis courts.


Name Tenure
Mother Leo Vincent Short, O.P. 1960 - 1964
Sr. Mary Francis McDonald, O.P. 1964 - 1972
Dr. William T. O'Hara 1972 - 1976
Sr. Anne Sakac, O.P 1976 - 2008
Fr. Kevin Mackin, O.F.M. July 1, 2008 - present

Notable alumni

  • Thomas Kirwan '70 - New York State Assembly - District 96
  • Cheryl A. Rogowski '84 - Agricultural Entrepreneur and Activist - Recipient of a 2004 MacArthur Foundation "Genius Award" Fellowship
  • Susan Davis '79 - CEO St. Vincent's Health Systems, Bridgeport, CT
  • James Tylee - CEO CyberFM Radio, Medford, NY
  • Angela C. Brust '97 - Contributing Editor, GAES Magazine Albany, NY

External links

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